October 17, 2008

I spent some time today trying to organize all of the writing I have been doing since we started our mission.
When we first arrived here I didn't have a blog and I would just send group letters home.
I realized today as I was reading them that there are some pretty interesting experiences that may be of interest to some of my readers. We have been getting alot of visits from returned missionaries, missionaries parents, and some new blogging friends who might like to read what it was like for us when we first started this incredible journey.
The first few months I wrote alot about our first impressions. I know that we definitely experienced culture shock when we arrived in Ukraine. I have to admit at first I had a hard time adjusting to being so far away from my family. I tried to stay focused on the mission but it was definitely hard. I'm just being honest. I really loved being with my husband. I loved that my Heavenly Father had provided this awesome experience for us. I could see that this mission was going to really change us. I knew from the start that Heavenly Father was definitely going to take weak things and make them stronger.
BUT .........
I really really really missed my grandchildren and my children. In fact I missed having a child on my lap, reading books to little ones, playing with play dough, teaching someone to cut with scissors, or just having a house full of family Come to think of it for as long as I can remember I have been nurturing someone. I was the oldest daughter in my family and had a sister who is 8 years younger than me. For the longest time, I think she thought I was her mom, well....... at least I acted like I was. Then when I was 14 I became a volunteer in the hospital and a Nursing Home and my first real job was in a Nursery School (that's what they use to call them). It was no surprise to anyone when I chose Early Childhood Education as my profession and later studied Nursing. I am a real mother hen. So when I got here it took some time to adjust. Talk about an empty nest. There wasn't even a nest to be found. So it took some time to find my way.
It took some time to get use to how different things are here. It took some time to find some sweet people to love on. If you have been reading our blog for awhile you know that we have found some wonderful people to grow attached to. Someone asked me the other day about our Interpreter Olga, she is definitely someone I have come to love. However, I think she does most of the nurturing with us. Sometimes I feel like she feels so responsible for us. Someday I will write about Olga. I love her so much and can't imagine the pain of saying goodbye to her. So we just won't talk about that right now. If you have been following our blog you know I feel so blessed. I can see Heavenly Fathers hands in our lives. I have so much to be grateful for. I love being a missionary. I love putting my black name tag on every day. I love being able to sit in a room full of missionaries. Which reminds me we have a Baptism in the morning. So I better stop right there. I just want to say that I am hoping I can find a way to add those early letters home to my blog.

4 messages from friends and family:

Jane Anne said...

I'm looking forward to the earlier posts. You'll have to let us all know when you actually post them so we can find them. I think you arrived just a couple of months before Elder Woodhead

Meaghan said...

I wanted to let you know that I finally launched my website www.getthebean.com. We are selling all sorts of great coffee's, teas and treats.

To celebrate the launch we are doing a ton of giveaways. If you would like to get in on it check out www.getthebean.blogspot.com

Also, if you are interested in raising $$$ for a charity of your choice check out www.gtbfightscancer.blogspot.com

Thanks so much!


McEwens said...

I look forward to reading your earlier post, to walk with you and see through your eyes this country.

(in answer to your question, people do this both ways, either replying on their blog, or the other persons) They will most likely read the reply if it is on the other persons blog. As we dont often get back to past posts.) Make sense?

The awards are more blog bling. Thanks for being so honest in your feelings here

dixiewhitehead said...

Being on a mission is being on a spiritual high anyway; and with the weekend you've just had with the dedication of the Kalinsky building and the holy Ghost being felt so strongly, it must seem like heaven. Now you have a baptism in the morning...you're really in the zone.

I would love to know your thoughts as you first started your mission.

Questions: Where does President Mikulin live? Russia, I presume? How often does he get over to the Donetsk Mission?

Saints in Ukraine (put music on pause)

My music

click on the photo to see the captions

Armenia Trip

Our last Zone Conference

Some of the faces we will miss

Our trip to Mariupol

March Zone Conference in Donetsk(click on photo to view a larger version)

Missionaries helping the International Relief Development unload a container from America

Health Fair click on the photo to see what is coming up

To listen to this talk you will need to put the music on pause first

Sometimes we forget what divine gifts we have been given. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, 2nd Counselor in the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints


Look at the fun equipment we got to deliver to this internat for Special Needs children

Europe East Area District Meeting


OUR APARTMENT (this is not an average missionary apartment)




Click on photo to see more photos of the Open House at the Kalininsky blg